I’m sitting in my dimly lit living room with M83 playing in the background, grapefruit La Croix in reach, snuggled into my new little body pillow covered in cats (thank you, Lisa) thinking about… marriage.
This last Saturday, two of the dearest people in my life- my nephew Luke and his lovely bride, Robin- were married in Snohomish, Washington in a perfectly delicate, rustic barn tinged with emerald, grey, baby’s breath and pussywillows. Across the world in Phnom Penh, two people close to my heart were married in the raw, stunning heat of Cambodia swarmed with adoration and celebration all with arms wide open. It kills me to have missed their wedding, but April 9th was a day for love that reached across seas.
Now it’s April 12th and I’m thinking about these great loves and considering my life without another. There are perks to the season of singleness: I only need to do dishes for one and do them as I please, I can leave my clothes lying around in mounds unapologetically, I don’t feel like I’m neglecting yet another person when work begins to suck up my social time, and I allow myself to focus on the things that are most important to me like reading, drawing, time in reflection, and going to sleep early.
There are also the many difficulties navigating through life without a partner in a world where friends and family are pairing up, have already been in union for years, and generally surrounded by a built in support system they can make out with any time they want. In my nephew’s vows, he began with “I never realized how lonely I was until I met you.” Cue the floodgate of tears.
I’ve written many times on loneliness, the pain of it and the understanding, the beauty of searching for comfort in solitude and the growth that one is forced into by being alone. There are days that I feel I’m lying to myself, maybe just a little bit. I know that I was built to be with someone.
While I may be good at being a lone wolf, hunkering down and weathering the seasons and coming out just as strong as ever, and simply making things work- I want to be looked at the way I see Tim look at Christina in their wedding photos, surrounded by ancient stone and divine loved ones. The way Geza smiles at my mother across the room while sipping wine in their living room. The way Luke gazed at Robin as they ate their first meal together as husband and wife. The way I look at a kitten opening its eyes for the first time or a platter of xiao long bao, all with lust and wonder.
The desire for that human comfort is there and strong, but not enough to settle. Not enough to go for the easiest, the simplest, the least complex. My standard is high and it will be met. I want fireworks and champagne and frenzied, tousled hair in the winds of unknown countries and dirt under my fingernails from newly discovered terrain. I want conversations that creep into the wee hours of the morning that scratch at my soul and eat my heart up. I want glazed eyes full of magic and every spark imaginable, for my soul to be filled to the brim and my skin to prickle and to be caught off guard throughout the days as my mind wanders into the arms of my loved one. I want my hands to tremble with worry and delight and to fill a room with glimmer as love drips from my fingertips.
I will wait.
I am complete without. I hope to be complete with.